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Friday, July 31, 2009

SOUNDWAVE lurks in space...

TRANSFORMERS 3... A.k.a. Transformers: Rise of the Headmaster. You might recall (or maybe you won’t) that I posted a Blog laying out a couple of ideas that I had for Transformers’ 2 and 3 almost a year before production on Revenge of the Fallen took place. Well naturally, the actual plot of ROTF didn’t come close to what I conjured up...but it DID feature lots of elements that I (as well as a lot of other TF fans) wanted to see: Megatron getting revived after being retrieved from the ocean depths, the Constructicons and Soundwave making their live-action movie debut, an aircraft carrier getting taken out by Decepticons at sea, a Decepticon posing as a human being sent to spy on Sam (though I didn’t mention this and the aircraft carrier scene in the Blog linked above... But I DID contemplate about these as well) and even Sam getting injured (though he actually ‘died’ in ROTF, haha) in the final battle. Oh, and the return of Barricade in the sequel...as, um, Sidesways. YEA, THANKS HASBRO (SARCASM). Okay technically, other TF fans probably didn’t want that Pretender played by Isabel Lucas to show up in ROTF...and seeing Sam being brought back to life by the Matrix of Leadership. Anyways...

TRANSFORMERS: NEFARIOUS cover art by Brian Rood.

Here’s hoping someone tells Michael Bay to cut back on the dog-fornicating, Megan Fox’s leg-humping, Devastator’s testicles-flaunting and John Turturro’s ass-bearing jokes in the third film, and spend more screentime on story points like these (I know, I know— Wishful thinking)...

****

-The movie takes place 5-6 years after the events of Revenge of the Fallen...and the Autobots and their human allies are in the midst of a long war with the Decepticons that started after the events at Egypt in ROTF.

-Sam is out of college, now married to Mikaela, and they have a newborn son named Daniel Witwicky.

-(This is me displaying my self-indulgent side since I’m a huge space geek too, haha) Sam and Mikaela have moved to Florida, where Sam is about to start his first day on the job at Kennedy Space Center as a computer IT guy.

-The reason why Sam landed a job at NASA was partly because of the effects the Allspark had on him from the first Transformers film and ROTF. Just as the Allspark made him smart enough to go to a college like Princeton, it made him even more smarter over the years and allowed him to apply for a job at America’s space agency.

-Over the course of the years, people around the globe have started to side with the Decepticons so the 'cons won’t harm them.

-Megatron, in possession of the Allspark shard that revived him in ROTF, has found a way to use the Allspark’s powers to manipulate the humans who are "working" for him. As shown by Sam in ROTF, the Allspark can cause someone to suffer mental breakdowns...so Megatron uses this to his advantage by driving these humans "insane" and making them dangerous to the people who side with the Autobots.

An Autobot protoform.

-The Decepticon known as Astrotrain and the Autobot known as Sky Lynx are two of the new ‘bots we see in Transformers: Rise of the Headmaster. They both pose as space shuttles.

-The Stunticons (Decepticons), Springer, Cliffjumper and Hound (all three are Autobots) also appear in TF3.

-Soundwave sends Laserbeak to spy on Sam and/or his family early on in the film.

-Over the years, Optimus Prime has developed a strong sense of trust with Major Lennox and Master Sergeant Epps, as well as select soldiers in their NEST team, and shares information regarding Transformers weapons technology with them.

-The NEST team, with the help of Ratchet, have developed armored suits that would help the soldiers survive combat against the Decepticons in battle. The NEST troops essentially become Powermasters.

-There is a human who Megatron has given the authority to control all the other humans who work for the Decepticons. He is known as the Headmaster.

Spike Witwicky as a Headmaster in the TRANSFORMERS Dreamwave comics.

-THE HEADMASTER KILLS MIKAELA during a crucial action scene (Megatron tests the Headmaster's loyalty to the Decepticons by having him eliminate Sam's wife). Sam is too late in coming to her aid. Sam is obviously distraught and out of the picture till the final battle.

-The climax of the film involves the Autobots and the Powermasters trying to infiltrate the Nemesis (which has been repaired since after ROTF, and arrives at Earth early on in TF3) to rescue more humans who have been captured by the Decepticons (such as Leo and that guy Galloway?)...as a way to get world governments to turn against the Autobots, and to transform the human hostages into more Headmasters.

-The Autobots and Powermasters capture a Decepticon Headmaster during an earlier action scene.

-Wanting revenge, Sam manages to take possession of the Decepticon Headmaster's suit and dons it (since it would be revealed early on in the film that the Headmasters' suits are much more powerful than those of the Powermasters) before joining the Autobots and NEST in attacking the Nemesis...and confronting the Headmaster who killed Mikaela.

-Sky Lynx is the one who transports the NEST team to the Nemesis in space. The Autobots revert back into their comet protoforms before flying up to the Decepticon flagship. However...

-My self-indulgent side wants the battle to take place in the skies above Kennedy Space Center...since we can also see an aerial battle between Astrotrain and Sky Lynx, or Starscream with the Aerialbots, or all these mofos’ duking it out at the same time above America’s spaceport.

The Ark by Alex Milne.

-Perhaps we see the Autobots' flagship, The Ark, show up at Earth. It provides aerial bombardment as Autobot and Decepticon forces battle on the ground...at Kennedy Space Center. Haha.

-OR... The Ark (commanded by Ultra Magnus? Just sayin') attacks the Nemesis in space, causing a distraction as Sky Lynx and the Autobot protoforms secretly approach and infiltrate the Decepticon flagship from behind.

-SAM DEFEATS THE HEADMASTER WHO KILLED MIKAELA.

-Either Sam kills the Headmaster, or Sam puts the Headmaster in a position where he is unable to escape the Nemesis just as it is about to blow up.

-The climax ends with the Nemesis being destroyed...but we don’t know what happened to Megatron, Starscream and a few other Decepticons (including Shockwave?). The Headmaster, if Sam let him live, watches as Megatron and Company desert him and leave him to become smithereens as the Decepticons' flagship goes bye-bye.

-THE FILM ENDS WITH MIKAELA'S FUNERAL. After that, Lennox, Epps, Optimus Prime and the other Autobots prepare to continue waging war against other Decepticons that have stayed on Earth. Sam, with his newborn son Daniel in his arms, looks on from a distance.


Megatron concept artwork.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The International Space Station...as of July 28, 2009.
NASA

PHOTOS OF THE DAY... Even though space shuttle Endeavour is no longer docked with the International Space Station (Endeavour is scheduled to land at Florida’s Kennedy Space Center tomorrow), just thought I’d share these two kick-ass images (below) that were taken of the two spacecraft from a ground-based telescope last Sunday. I found these photos on the On Orbit website.

A wide shot of space shuttle Endeavour and the International Space Station in transit in front of the Sun.

A close-up of space shuttle Endeavour and the International Space Station in transit in front of the Sun.
Both images courtesy of Thierry Legault / Look at Sciences

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

On July 23, 2009, the Hubble Space Telescope shot this image of Jupiter after an object recently collided with it.
NASA / ESA and H. Hammel (Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colo.), and the Jupiter Impact Team

SUMMER OF 1994... Just thought I’d reminisce about the events of that season in this journal entry, for the heck of it. In some ways, this summer reminds me of that one 15 years ago. Well actually, there are only two events this year that are direct reminders of the past. I’ll mention them below.

PIC 1: Brandon Lee in THE CROW.  PIC 2: Keanu Reeves tries to save Sandra Bullock's life in SPEED.

JUNE ’94:

-I graduated from elementary school...and as one of my graduation gifts, I got money to buy my first CD ever: The Crow movie soundtrack (with kick-ass songs by Stone Temple Pilots, Nine Inch Nails, Rage Against the Machine, The Cure and much more). Brandon Lee kicked ass as the avenging guitar hero in the film. Rest in peace, dude.

-The Normandy (D-Day) landings celebrate their 50th anniversary.

-Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock get it on in Speed...which was an awesome movie. Dennis Hopper is insane.

PIC 1: Jamie Lee Curtis and Arnold Schwarzenegger in TRUE LIES.  PIC 2: An infrared photo of Jupiter after it is struck by Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9's fragments.

JULY ’94:

-Arnold Schwarzenegger dances the tango with Jamie Lee Curtis and rides a Harrier jet in True Lies...which was worth its $100 million budget. James Cameron, who directed this movie, would spend twice that amount on his Oscar-winning epic Titanic a few years later.

-Apollo 11 marks its 25th anniversary. This year, the moon landing celebrated its 40th anniversary.

-Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 strikes Jupiter over a 6-day span. This year, another mysterious object struck the giant planet and left a scar the size of the Pacific Ocean in its atmosphere. See pic at the very top of this journal entry.

-My family and I went to Griffith Observatory because telescopes were set up to watch the celestial collision at the Jovian planet take place. Yes, you heard RIGHT. I’m talking like a poindexter. As usual.

PIC 1: Jim Carrey and Cameron Diaz share a dance in THE MASK.  PIC 2: A Todd McFarlane drawing of SPAWN.

AUGUST ’94:

-Since early June, I made a gripload of drawings based on comic book series like Youngblood, Deathblow, Pitt and Spawn. As of today, only one of those four comics, Spawn, is still being published. You can view most of these drawings in my Artwork section.

-I also drew The Mask...which was released in movie theaters on July 29, but never saw it till I bought the VHS tape (VHS...wow) a few months later. I was greatly disappointed...since so much hype was made around the CGI work done in the movie whenever Jim Carrey donned the mask. The special effects were awesome... The movie? Not so much. Cameron Diaz, on the other hand... DAYAMN. In this movie, at least.

-My family went to Griffith Observatory again. I haven’t been back since. I’ll return...eventually.

-I had two Japanese exchange students (or was it one? I don’t remember) stay at my family’s house for like two weeks. I recall that we took them to watch True Lies since it was still out in theaters...as well as the Harrison Ford-as-Jack Ryan flick, Clear & Present Danger.

-I counted down to the days before I started freshman year in high school.

-I started my first year in high school. I hung around with some of the hottest Asian girls and coolest Asian groups on campus. For about a month.

My high school alma mater...which didn't look like that back in '94.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

HOW to make Twilight into a better movie...

Blade sneaks up on Kristen Stewart and her metrosexual bloodsucking companion.

Here are a few more:

The new Internet meme: Bella and Edward biting the dust at the hands of Hollywood icons.

First Megan Fox and now this. That kid sure can't catch a break.

That kid should might as well give those flowers to his mom or something.

One more for the road. 'Kay I'm done.

Now if only Kristen Stewart could wear the same outfit.  But this will do.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

RIP, Taco Bell Chihuahua... Gidget, the rat dog who was the spokesmutt for the food chain back in the 1990s, passed away on Tuesday. She was 15.

What the Taco Bell Chihuahua and Mojo from TRANSFORMERS both have in common...

For those of you who are very distraught over the death of Gidget, there’s always Mojo—the humping Chihuahua in both Transformers films.

Mojo is looking for another dog to dominate.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

THE FINAL BREAK... I bought the DVD yesterday, and after I finished watching the movie, all I have to say is: So it WASN'T the nosebleed that did him in? Interesting. Rest in peace, Michael Scofield.

If you thought that offering my condolences for a fictional TV character is odd, wait till Jack Bauer checks out. Assuming he ever does. Will have to wait for Day 8 of 24 to premiere next January to find out...

PRISON BREAK: THE FINAL BREAK.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

LAST SATURDAY, I went to The Happy Ending bar in Hollywood to attend a surprise birthday party for one of my former college classmates. It was fun... I never played the game ‘Flip Cup’ before, haha. The most amusing moment of the night was me giving a feet massage to this one cute Caucasian brunette (named Des. Or Dez) who sat next to me on a couch. She mentioned how her feet were hurting from her being on the dance floor for a long time, so I offered to give them a rub-down to make ‘em feel better. She accepted.

I didn’t get Des/Dez’s phone number (or even asked her if she was on MySpace or Facebook), but I did ask her if she was with anyone. Her ex-boyfriend was at the bar, but other than that, she said ‘no’. But this was before she left the couch (but not before giving me a peck on the cheek as gratitude for the massage) and started dancing with some punkass who took liquor shots off her, um, chest. Bastard.


Other than that, it was a fun night. One of my friends sitting next to me while I was talking to the brunette brought a fancy camera with him to the party. Kinda irked that he didn't take pictures of the massage... Oh well.

Chillin' at The Happy Ending Bar in Hollywood, on July 18, 2009.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Happy 40th Anniversary, Apollo 11!

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin sets up a lunar experiment after he and Neil Armstrong became the first humans to set foot on the Moon, on July 20, 1969.
NASA

In a bit of timing that pretty much wasn't coincidental, NASA released the images below last Friday...showing 5 of the 6 Apollo landing sites as recently seen by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) spacecraft. The Apollo 12 landing site should be photographed by LRO in the coming weeks. Before conspiracy theorists out there label these pics as your typical works of Photoshop, LRO has yet to settle into its final and lower orbit around the Moon...which means future photos of these landing zones should have much better resolution than the ones posted below. And hopefully, the future pics will be in color.


The Apollo 11, 15, 16 and 17 landing sites as seen by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) a few days ago.

The Apollo 14 landing site as seen by LRO a few days ago.

All Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter images courtesy of NASA / Goddard Space Flight Center / Arizona State University

Friday, July 17, 2009

REST IN PEACE, Walter Cronkite (1916-2009). He passed away at the age of 92 today. Cronkite, "the most trusted man in America," reported on some of the most momentous events in the 20th century...including the assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr...as well as the Apollo lunar landings.

Walter Cronkite with NASA space capsules behind him.

I obviously don't want a repeat of events like the JFK and MLK tragedies, but who will we turn to next for a spirited commentary when a future generation of astronauts travel to the Moon? Whenever that will be? That question will remain unanswered for a while...

Thursday, July 16, 2009

40 YEARS AGO TODAY, a Saturn V rocket carrying NASA's Apollo 11 spacecraft and its 3 astronauts launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on a 3-day voyage to the Moon. When we send humans back to Earth's closest neighbor is anyone's guess...

A Saturn V rocket carrying NASA's Apollo 11 spacecraft launches to the Moon on July 16, 1969.
NASA

15 YEARS AGO TODAY, the remnants of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 began its 6-day barrage of the southern hemisphere of Jupiter. This is one of the events that made the summer of 1994 memorable. That, and me preparing for my freshman year in high school.


Brown spots mark the impact sites of Comet Shoemaker Levy-9 after its fragments collided with Jupiter, between July 16-22, 1994.
NASA / Hubble Space Telescope Comet Team

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

SIXTH TIME'S THE CHARM... Endeavour will reach the International Space Station this Friday.

After 5 previous launch attempts since early June, space shuttle Endeavour finally lifts off from Florida's Kennedy Space Center on July 15, 2009.
NASA / Sandra Joseph & Kevin O'Connell

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

FYI, these two awesome pieces of artwork have also been sitting on my Desktop for the past 4 months. To view more kick-ass illustrations like these, go to Mark Waki's website. Later.

Space shuttle artwork #1, by Mark Waki.

Space shuttle artwork #2, by Mark Waki.

Both illustrations courtesy of Mark Waki

Monday, July 13, 2009

THIS IMAGE has been taking up space on my Desktop screen for the past, oh, 4 months or so, so I thought I'd just post this here in honor of the launch of space shuttle Endeavour on STS-127. Whenever the heck that will be... (There's a 60% chance of bad weather scrubbing today's liftoff.)

UPDATE (3:45 PM): Make that a 100% chance of bad weather scrubbing today's liftoff. Florida in the summertime... Speaking of which, next month marks a year since I went on that cruise to The Bahamas.


A space shuttle rolls through morning fog on its way to the launch pad.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Don't taunt a Sith Lord.

SO LAST NIGHT, I dreamt that I was in the movie Return of the Jedi. Though this was an alternate version I was in (not surprisingly. This is a dream). How was it an alternate, you ask? Well, in this version, Emperor Palpatine was desperately trying to convince Luke Skywalker into joining the Dark Side...instead of playing simple mind games with him as seen in the actual film. After Skywalker repeatedly refused, the Emperor gave up, literally packed up his belongings (don’t remember what the items were) and was about to walk away. But just as Palpatine was about to leave, Luke kept standing in his way and started to taunt him. I think I even recall telling Luke to stop f**king around and let the Emperor through. Eventually, Palpatine dropped his belongings and finally started to give Skywalker the ol’ Force lightning treatment that we all remember from the actual movie. Did I mention that Mark Hamill’s acting was, um, pretty horrendous as he convulsed on the ground from the lightning attack? Anyways, instead of Darth Vader coming to the rescue and throwing Palpatine down the Death Star's reactor shaft (actually, I don't think we were on the Death Star. I think we were on Cloud City from The Empire Strikes Back), it was some droid (don’t know if it was a protocol droid a la C-3PO) that stabbed the Emperor with Vader’s lightsaber and hauled him into the shaft. The dream ended with me taking hold of the lightsaber hilt and messing with its buttons. That is all.

Sith Lords are awesome.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

CLINTON SHOULD BE ENVIOUS... All he got was Monica Lewinsky.

Sarkozy is amused.

Friday, July 10, 2009

JENNIFER'S BODY... The hand underneath Megan Fox's arse should be all bloodied up or something to make it look cooler. Or at least have it hold a piece of tissue that's covered in, um...uhhh...nevermind.

JENNIFER'S BODY theatrical poster.
Courtesy of BD Horror News

And here's the "red band" (a.k.a. For Adults Only) theatrical trailer that was released for Jennifer's Body a few days ago.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

The ninja from that hit video game, METAL GEAR SOLID.

WHAT IS YOUR CYBORG NAME? Click here to find out... (It's also featured on Facebook if you have an account there)

R.I.C.H.A.R.D.: Robotic Intelligent Construct Hardwired for Assassination and Rational Destruction

M.C.P.A.R.N.O.: Mechanical Cybernetic Person Assembled for Repair and Nocturnal Observation

I like the R.I.C.H.A.R.D. one better.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

SOUNDWAVE lurks in space...

TRANSFORMERS 3... Two cool artwork for two cool characters that would be cool to see in the third film. Moreso with Shockwave... The green version is cool, but if I wanted a nod to the original 1980's cartoon, I’d choose the purple.


SHOCKWAVE concept artwork.
Courtesy of Bad Flip Productions

UNICRON concept artwork... Note the 'speck' of Optimus Prime towards the bottom of the artwork for size reference.
Found on the Don Murphy message board

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Audrina Patridge.

RANDOM BABE BLOG #13... Today’s entry goes to Audrina Patridge, who stars in MTV’s hit reality TV show The Hills with Lauren Conrad. Actually, I don’t know if Ms. Conrad is on that show anymore... Whatever.

Audrina Patridge and former 'The Hills' co-star Lauren Conrad.

If you don't watch The Hills (which I don't), you might recognize Audrina from that hot "Bikini Burger" commercial that’s being aired by Carl’s Jr. right now. That ad is shown below. FYI, Audrina could practice on her voiceover skills a little bit more...




And here's the "Making of" video:

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Isabel Lucas as Alice, the (Decepticon) Pretender in TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN.

SO LAST NIGHT I dreamt I was an extra in Transformers 3. We were at a college campus near my house, and for the scene I was in, Michael Bay wanted me to run out of the way as Bumblebee's Camaro drove down a campus walkway just before he was suppose to transform into 'bot mode. It was a cool dream... Though it seemed like it was taking forever to get the first shot out of the way (which, in reality, would’ve already taking place since Bay is known for doing fast set-ups and getting around 40 shots—don’t quote me on this figure— done in a single day). Anyways, Happy Fourth of July everyone!! To those of you who’s a Yank...like me.

The Pretender reveals itself in TRANSFORMERS: REVENGE OF THE FALLEN.